Politics and Business
New Employment: Top 5 Things to Look for In Your Contract
There are several exciting milestones in any young adult’s life but few of them measure up to being gainfully employed. The beginning of anyone’s career path is always filled with elation and excitement at the prospect of having such a bright future.
When you’re celebrating your first job offer, don’t forget to be on the lookout for red flags on your new hire paperwork. It is always better to be cautious, especially when you’re new to the world of full-time employment.
Below are the top five things that you should look for in your employment contract. If you’re unsure of anything or if something looks off to you, don’t hesitate to ask for clarification or consult a professional to help you unpack the terms and conditions.
- Contract Duration
If your contract has a term, you need to know the specific dates for the duration of your employment.
Your employment contract must have a precise start date – that will allow you to transition between your part-time previous job and ensure that there are no clashes with your proposed new start date.
- Job Description
Your employment contract should contain a clear description of your expected duties, roles, and responsibilities.
You should be confident going into your employment that you will never feel overwhelmed or misled by what got discussed at your interview versus what gets asked of you later.
Your new employer should show you the ropes and offer a mentorship for learning new skills such as strategies for options trading.
Some companies prefer keeping job descriptions vague, but you should ask for more detail if anything is unclear.
- Restrictive Terms
Depending on your industry, some companies try to protect themselves by enforcing restrictions on their employees. These are called restrictive covenants and include things like noncompete and nondisclosure clauses.
These clauses are there to restrict employees, both past and present, affecting their ability to work or start their own business in the same period. If your contract contains any of these clauses, consult HKM to go through each one and ensure that everything is above board.
After your interview, you should have clear expectations of what you can expect to earn at the start of your employment with your new employer.
Ideally, your new company should send you a Job Offer Letter before you sign anything that summarizes the proposed job conditions and employment terms, including your salary.
You can accept that letter, or you could choose to negotiate at that point – which is a risk, but sometimes it is a necessary one to get what you want.
Job contracts should clearly outline termination details following any probationary period imposed.
For example, a contract should stipulate termination terms and the notice period you or your employer must provide before employment gets terminated. That will typically include employees to provide written notice in the form of a formal resignation letter.
Although there are unscrupulous companies out there that aren’t honest or fair, most workplaces offer a healthy place to grow your career and your skillset. Don’t assume the worst, but always be ready to do what is best for you and your career.